Earthquakes

Magnitude 5+ Earthquakes – Global

5.3 Earthquake hits Kyushu, Japan.

5.0 Earthquake hits north of Ascension Island.

Storms and Floods

Tropical Storms – Roundup of Tropical Storms:

Gl sst mm

Tropical Storm Erika is located about 390 mi…630 km E of Antigua with maximum sustained winds…40 mph…65 km/h. Present movement…W or 280 degrees at 18 mph…30 km/h. Hazards affecting land: wind: tropical storm conditions are expected to first reach the warning area in the Leeward Islands tonight, and reach the Virgin Islands and Puerto Rico on Thursday. Tropical storm conditions are possible in the watch area tonight and early Thursday. Rainfall: Erika is expected to produce total rain accumulations of 2 to 4 inches with maximum amounts of 8 inches across portions of the Leeward Islands, the Virgin Islands, and Puerto Rico through Friday morning.

Tropical Storm Ignacio is located about 1485 mi…2385 km ESE of Hilo Hawaii with maximum sustained winds…50 mph…85 km/h. Present movement…W or 260 degrees at 7 mph…11 km/h.

Tropical Depression Kilo is located about 160 mi…255 km NE of Johnston Island and about 585 mi…940 km WSW of Barking Sands Hawaii with maximum sustained winds…35 mph…55 km/h. Present movement…WSW or 240 degrees at 5 mph…7 km/h.

Tropical Storm Loke is located about 370 mi…595 km NNE of Midway Island with maximum sustained winds…50 mph…85 km/h. Present movement…NW or 325 degrees at 21 mph…33 km/h.

Invest 96E is an area of disturbed weather in the East Pacific that has the potential for tropical development.

NewsBytes:

Alaska – Searchers in Alaska on Tuesday recovered the third and last body of three people who went missing after a landslide last week on Aug. 18. The landslide that carried mud and trees sweeping down a road occurred after 24 hours of heavy rain in the mountainous community in Alaska’s southeastern tip.

Global Warming

Huge Chunk Breaks Off Greenland Glacier

The evidence that climate change and global warming are real and a threat to mankind continues to pile up. The most recent piece of evidence is news that Greenland’s famous Jakobshavn Glacier has just calved off a huge chunk, in one of the largest glacier calvings ever recorded. The iceberg that sank the Titantic is thought to have broken off from the Jakobshavn glacier.

Based on data from the European Space Agency, the iceberg that separated from the glacier has an area of 12.5 square kilometres and is nearly 1,400 meters deep. The total volume of the massive iceberg is projected at close to 17.5 cubic kilometres. The ice chunk broke off from Greenland’s Jakobshavn Glacier between August 14 and 16.

There is no doubt that Greenland is a huge contributor to the current rise in sea levels (around a millimetre per year), and all of its ice together represents a potential 20 feet of total sea level rise. However, given all of the area involved and technical limitations, researchers are simply not able to monitor all of the losses of Greenland’s ice sheet with great accuracy.

Environment

Garbage Islands Are Swamping Oceans

Polluted waters

In the oceans, you can find eight million tonnes of garbage, which is enough to choke five carrier bags for every foot of coastline in the world. As these are carried by ocean currents, they pile up to five giant ‘garbage islands’ that swirl around the world’s major ocean gyres.

Annually, the planet spews between 8 million and 12.7 million tons of plastic bottles, bags, toys and other plastic rubbish into the oceans.

Nasa has now created a “visualisation of this pollution” showing how humanity is degrading the oceans. Scientists are releasing some buoys into the oceans to track the progress of the garbage.

Visualisation can be watched here.

Wildlife

Rare Sea Creature Spotted In South Pacific

A type of a sea creature known as a nautilus, not seen for more than 30 years and thought perhaps extinct, has been spotted in the South Pacific, researchers say.

Nautiluses – small, distant relatives of cuttlefish and squid — are ancient animals, sometimes referred to as “living fossils” because the creatures’ distinctive spiral shells have been showing up in the fossil record for the last 500 million years.

The particular nautilus in question, Allonautilus scrobiculatus, was rediscovered in waters of Papua New Guinea’s Ndrova Island by University of Washington biologists Peter Ward after originally discovering it in 1984.

Considered one of the rarest animals on Earth, it hasn’t been seen since.

Allonautilus scrobiculatus

Volcanos

Roundup of Global Volcanic Activity

Santiaguito (Guatemala): A stronger than usual explosion occurred yesterday morning at 08:43 local time, producing a plume that rose approx. 2 km above the lava dome and generated small pyroclastic flows. INSIVUMEH reported that the lava flow to the east side of the dome remains weakly active, generating small avalanches.

Cotopaxi (Ecuador): The eruption continues with similar activity as during the past days, with a gradually increasing trend. Accompanied by near-continuous tremor, the volcano now produces almost constant, dense ash plumes rising up to 2 km and drifting into westerly directions, reaching the Pacific Ocean. The current phase of near-continuous emissions started during the night 22-23 Aug, when volcanic tremor appeared suddenly at 21:41 local time. The next day, after 18 hours, 2 mm of new brown ash fall had accumulated on the western side in the Cotopaxi National Park.

Piton de la Fournaise (La Réunion): The eruption that started yesterday continues, but only one of several fissures (east of the Rivals crater), that opened last night remains active over a length of 100 m. A small cone has been built at its upper end, approx. 140 m east of Rivals crater. Strombolian activity occurs from this vent, while 3 other vents lower on the fissure continue to produce lava fountains and feed a lava flow that slowly advances towards the Grandes Pentes. The volcano observatory reports that both tremor and lava effusion rates have been dropping, first rapidly after the first, most intense two hours last night and more slowly since.